Photographer: Cate Gillon/Getty Images

Peking Duck Barred During Party Congress

China’s 19th Communist Party Congress is a feast for China-watchers and political observers, but maybe not for some food-lovers.

Peking Duck, the Chinese capital’s best-known dish that’s popular among foreigners and Chinese alike, is on selective offering in the city during the week-long gathering of Party cadres because of a possible security risk.

The reason is a government-imposed ban on open flames in areas near the Great Hall of the People, according to staff at the nearby Siji Minfu restaurant, one of the top duck restaurant chains in the capital.

Beijing Duck gets its telltale crispy skin and succulent flavoring by being roasted with an open flame. Non-duck dishes were not affected at the restaurant, the staff said, noting that duck will be back on the menu next week after the Congress ends. Siji Minfu employees said they were referring eager customers seeking Beijing duck to the chain’s other locations further away from the city’s political center.

— With assistance by Gary Gao

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